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8 Year Old Punching Himself in Head

Lovin' the BBQ Sauce

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31-Mar-11 7:46 am

I need some help.  My ADHD son is becoming more and more violent toward himself and his little brothers.  He's on Intuniv so has gained some weight and it's really hard for me to physically control him now.  He has very low self-esteem because of his "bad brain," and says he hates himself and wants to be dead (this is daily for him).  But last night, when I saw him literally punching himself in the head and ramming it into the wall, I got really scared for him.  Does anyone else have an ADHD child with this level of self-esteem and aggression issues?  Now, my 2-year old is starting to copy him! 

First thing this morning, I put in a call to a child psychologist for an appointment.  Do you think anti-depressants are an option?  Has anyone had experience with them?

Baby Boy Logan - 9 Baby Boy Shane - 7 Baby Boy Julian- 4

 

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31-Mar-11 8:56 am

I'm so sorry!  This has got to be heartbreaking for you and your son. 

I don't know what Intuniv is, but could it be causing this kind of behavior as a side effect?  I think that seeing a professional is the best route of intervention and hopefully he'll get help asap.

Is something going on at school that he hasn't talked about?  I'm sure that the Dr will talk to him about all of this too.  I hope that you get answers for him quickly.

(totally off topic, but we are asking all members to please not post links to businesses in their siggies as it breaks forum rules...thanks)

Lovin' the BBQ Sauce

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31-Mar-11 11:07 am

Oops, sorry!  Is my blog okay in my siggie?

He has problems in school with his teacher.  She's old and teaches a bit military style.  They're constantly at odds with each other and I've seen his personality change drastically this year from last when he had a younger teacher who had patience.  The Intuniv doesn't really affect personality.  Instead, it makes you gain weight and have night terrors.  We've tried the stimulants, but they give give him terrible face and throat ticks.  It's like pick your poison.

Baby Boy Logan - 9 Baby Boy Shane - 7 Baby Boy Julian- 4

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19-Apr-11 4:44 am

Sorry I'm a late responder. Just checking in to see how you are going. I'm sorry you and your family, in particular your DS, are having such a difficult time. I think it is a great idea to talk to the psychiatrist/ologist. I hope they are able to give you a few different suggestions and options re: medications and treatment. Snakes&snails has just posted I think about anti-depressents. I've not had any experience with them. What side effects does Intuniv list as having?  

Baby BoyBaby BoyBaby BoyBaby Girl

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19-Apr-11 11:14 pm

OK first, DON'T DO SSRI antidepressants. I wouldn't do ANY anti-depressants in most circumstances. Please see my post from a few days ago on this. :(

Can you look into an autism center to give some in-home therapy? That sounds rough. I know how awful it is to hear your child say they don't want to live. :( (((hugs)))

I agree Intuniv doesn't seem to change personality, though sometimes I think it might deprive the kids of some sleep (they wake 5:30am many days) and thus make them whiney/grumpy.

BTW, both my boys are on Intuniv. 7 yo is on 2 mg and 9 yo is on 3 mg. I am going to do a trial off of it with them this summer, just to check, but overall I have been happy with how mild the side effects are (after the first 2 weeks of use). The only thing I notice is they fall asleep earlier and more easily.

On stimulents, they both had horrible, manic-like energy rebound in the am and late evening. DS1 used to just run back and fourth, back and fourth 100's of times throwing up a football and catching it. They also were stick thin and still losing weight. When we took them off stims., they shot up in height, both put on weight and looked so much healthier.

BUT, for my kids, the stimulants helped their fine motor control, organization, and focus and they aren't doing as well in those areas right now on the Intuniv. The Intuniv seems to mellow them a bit, and they are doing fine overall in school on it. They are still forgetful, super hyper and silly several times a day, occasionally aggressive and complain about schoolwork.

So, overall for my own kids ADHD meds, stimulents *worked* better, but with pretty nasty side effects, Intuniv, works OK and the side effects are mild.

Out of curiosity, what differences did you see on the different meds?

 Baby Boy 12 , Baby Boy 9 , Baby Girl 3

"Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass. It's about learning to dance in the rain." - Vivian Green

Read my blog about raising my challenging kids: http://www.wereswimminginalphabetsoup.blogspot.com

Lovin' the BBQ Sauce

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29-Apr-11 11:42 am

He's doing much better, thanks.  No more self-punching, thank God.  We do love the Intuniv and have even added a low dose (2mg) of long-lasting stimulant (Adderall) to add some extra oomph.  If we go any higher with the stimulant he gets throat and tongue ticks.  If your children are still a little lacking in their focus, try adding a small dose of stimulant.  We haven't experienced any rebound and it's helped a lot with reducing his weight gain.  Almost like their side effects are canceling each other out.  The FDA approved stimulants with Intuniv on Feb. 28th.  You may want to ask your doctor about it.  It's made a great difference for us.  :)  Oh, and we're loving the sleeping as well.  He actually gets up before anyone else now and gets himself ready!  Intuniv is like a miracle drug...just wish it was cheaper.

Baby Boy Logan - 9 Baby Boy Shane - 7 Baby Boy Julian- 4

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